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2017 ARRA Semi-Annual Meeting Program Draws Record Attendance

Monday, October 30, 2017   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Kristi Olson

ARRA President Darren Coughlin
welcomes attendees .

Unseasonably warm weather in Minneapolis made for an enjoyable tour of the MnROAD pavement test track for the record-setting 166 attendees of the Asphalt Recycling & Reclaiming Association Semi-Annual Meeting this October 16-19.  With the support of both the Federal Highway Administration and MnROAD, the meeting drew a balanced mix of government agency personnel, contractors, suppliers, and affiliated professionals.
In addition to the MnROAD tour, attendees enjoyed a dynamic program featuring a kickoff from 2011 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Matt Birk, speakers from as far as South Africa, a behind-the-scenes tour of Super Bowl LII location US Bank Stadium, and updates on progress on the new PPRA website during technical committee meetings.


ARRA President Darren Coughlin welcomed the attendees and took a moment to acknowledge that the event was made possible by the generous sponsorship of several ARRA members. The MnROAD tour was sponsored by Roadtec, Inc. The Wirtgen Group sponsored the keynote speaker, meeting lanyards, and co-sponsored the US Bank Stadium Tour & Reception, also co-sponsored by Caterpillar.  The Miller Group sponsored the meeting internet including the mobile app.  General sponsors included Blount Construction Company Inc., BLS Enterprises, Inc., Ergon Asphalt & Emulsions, Inc, JADCO Manufacturing, Midstate Reclamation & Trucking, Rock Solid Stabilization & Reclamation, Inc., Sollami Company, Superior Tire & Rubber Corp., and Tricon Wear Solutions.

Keynote Matt Birk opened the session Tuesday speaking on the “7 Choices that Lead to Greatness.”  MnROAD Operations Engineer Ben Worel then set the stage for the MnROAD tour, providing background on the test track facility, followed by MnDOT Research Operations Engineer Jerry Geib providing additional need-to-know information about the track, and the next day guiding the MnROAD tour.  Buzz Powell, NCAT Test Track Assistant Director, then shared updates on their sister facility, the NCAT Test Track.  Etienne Le Bouteiller of COLAS closed the morning session by sharing a preview of PPRA 2018, the Second World Congress on Maintenance Modernization, Adaptation of Roads and Streets for Tomorrow’s Mobility, happening this coming March in Nice, France.



Keynote speaker Matt Birk kicks off
the meeting with the "7 Choices that
Lead to Greatness.”


Kim Jenkins traveled from South Africa
to give two presentations
during the meeting.

Kim Jenkins of South Africa’s Stellenbosch University next spoke on North vs. South – A Recycling Perspective from [the Other] Down Under,” highlighting some of the differences in asphalt between the northern and southern hemispheres.  Iowa State University's Ashley Buss then shared information on Preservation & Rehabilitation Education, demonstrating how university-industry collaboration has improved pavement education.  Closing the first day of the meeting, Lindsay Matush of Vario Consulting provided participants with an advance preview of some of the functionality being built into the new PPRA website.  Throughout the meeting, each of the CORE technical subcommittees also reviewed components of the new site during their meetings.

Wednesday morning began with an informative presentation from Joe Triplett of the Chisago County, MN, Department of Public Works, who provided an overview of three successful hot in-place recycling projects the county has completed over the last two years.  Andrew Braham, Civil Engineering Associate Professor at the University of Arkansas, then presented a life cycle cost case for full-depth reclamation (FDR), which was then followed by some information on thickness design in FDR presented by Pavement Design Engineer Andy Johnson of the Southeast Cement Promotion Association.

Kim Jenkins next returned to share his recipe for success with a balanced mix design approach, sharing new laboratory compaction methods, conditioning and testing, and links between lab mix design and structural design.  The session continued with Dan Wegman of Braun Intertec Corp. sharing information on optimizing cold in-place recycling (CIR) applications through performance testing and closed with Brian Diefenderfer of the Virginia Department of Transportation addressing the best means of quality control testing for in-place recycling.

Participants got an opportunity to leave the meeting rooms Wednesday afternoon to participate in a tour of the MnROAD test track facility.  Working in conjunction with the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT), and led by MnDOT Research Operations Engineer Jerry Geib, attendees walked the 2.5 mile low-volume loop, viewing unique pavement sections and hearing about the adjacent 1-94 test sections that make up the more than 50 unique test sections at this facility. MnROAD personnel provided information and demonstration of the field monitoring and laboratory testing equipment, and provided information on the more than 950 sensors that help secure data.


MnDOT Research Operations Engineer
Jerry Geib guides the MnROAD tour.


The final day of the meeting had a focus directed toward milling, with the new OSHA silica regulations starting the discussions.  Director of the Office of Chemical Hazards David O’Connor went over the key provisions of the new silica standard as it pertains to asphalt construction and NAPA’s Vice President for Environmental, Health & Safety Howard Marks described how objective data can be used to assess the need for further controls.

Brian Girouard, Paving Specialists Sales Engineer Manager for Trimble, next described how 3D machine guidance for milling can help build a better foundation for our aging infrastructure.  Brian Diefenderfer spoke again, drawing from in-the-field experiences, including characterizing the laboratory and field performance of materials from in-place recycling projects, to share some positive cold central plant experiences.  The final presentation of the meeting was from Don Matthews of Pavement Recycling Systems, Inc. who discussed milling techniques to improve intermediate asphalt pavement surfaces and how the lower surfaces impact final surface IRI.

Copies of the meeting presentations are available, with videotaped presentations also coming soon, and ARRA members can access via the Members-Only section of the website.  Other interested parties can contact ARRA headquarters via for presentation related inquiries.

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